When I first started cross stitching towards the end of 2020, I’m not sure I expected to love it as much as I do and I certainly didn’t expect, though I should have known, that I would acquire as much “stuff” as I have.
As charts came in, I stuck them in a little storage ottoman. It was easy to remember which charts I had purchased. Then, as more and more charts arrived, I realized I had ordered a few duplicates so I got the X-Stitch Plus app and entered all the charts in there. That helped with avoiding duplicate purchases but sometimes I wouldn’t enter a chart in the app and I couldn’t remember if I had purchased it or just thought about purchasing it and first thing I knew, I had two of them.
Towards the end of 2021, I made a list of the projects I wanted to work on in 2022 and put those projects in bags and put them in a different bin. Since then, there hasn’t been a lot of ordering but what has arrived, has just been tossed into a bin, along with charts I pulled out for one reason or another and didn’t put back where they belonged. That was a pretty big mess . . lots of charts to be put away.
I didn’t get everything organized but I made really great progress. Here’s what I did:
- Sorted according to designer: I took all the Plum Street, all the Blackbird, all the Scarlett House, etc. designs and put the charts together by designer and put those into one of the plastic meshy project bags I use. I made sure every chart was listed in the X-Stitch Plus app.
- I attached a 2.5″ x 3″ tag made out of cardstock to the zipper pull on each bag. On the tag, I simply wrote the designer’s name. The charts are not in alphabetical order. Designers like The Scarlett House and Plum Street may have 15 or so charts but most have less than five.
- Blackbird Designs has booklets and they don’t fit so well into the project bags – especially if there are many of them to I put them on a bookshelf next to where the storage bins are stored.
- Divided up kits: In the beginning, I would pull the floss and choose a fabric, then put the chart, fabric and floss into a project bag. I didn’t do this with every chart but with too many of them. There was a lot of floss and a lot of fabric tied up in those bags. I went through about half the “kits” and decided if there was a chance they would end up on my 2023 stitching list, I would leave the kit as is, and the ones that were not a definite maybe, I took the fabric out. I mostly left the overdyed cotton floss and DMC because I’d rather pay $2.50 for another skein than have to add all that floss back to the floss closet (putting it all back in alphabetical order).
- Removed the bobbins: All the Victoria Clayton Silks are in those hard plastic pink bobbin cases I use and they take up a lot of room. Instead of being able to get nearly 100 charts into a bin without the bobbin cases, I could only get maybe 25 of the kits into the bins with the bobbin cases so I removed all the bobbin boxes, stacked them in alphabetical order on a shelf, put a sticky note with the chart that I have Victoria Clayton Silks for that project.
There’s probably another four or five hours worth of work to be done to get this whole setup the way I want it.
Here it is almost May 1 and it isn’t going to be THAT long before time to make my stitching plans for 2023 and figure out a WIPGO chart for 2023. Again, I’ll pull those projects out and keep them separate so I’m not digging through charts to find what I need. Once I start digging through those charts, I come across a whole lot of things I want to stitch.
I think I’ll be even stronger in 2023 about not buying, simply because I have a better grip on how much I have right now and really, just going through hundreds of charts, there are very few that I didn’t want to pull out and start working on now. I’m happy with the charts I have and would love to stitch them so . . no more charts!